ESTATE TAG SALE & ESTATE AUCTION INFO
Auctions Unlimited is a full service company that can help you sell your Personal and/or Business Property. Below you will find very informative information, learn all the facts & why you can rest at ease with our company
We are bonded, insured & experienced. We work off of commissions and never have any up front fees. We offer many services and several services that no one else in this area are able to provide to help get the most for the items we sell for you! We have a very large customer base, email list & very large website following. We also operate an auction house in Shreveport, LA. (Learn more about this in Estate Sale vs. Estate Auction)
ESTATE SALES & ESTATE AUCTIONS
|An Estate sale differs from a yard or garage sale in that an Estate Sale is typically held to sell every item in a home. Most Estate Sales are held as a result of a serious illness, death, divorce or move to a Retirement or Assisted Living Center.|
|Estate Sales can be held as "tag" sales (where every item is tagged with a price to sell) or an Estate Auction where the auctioneer accepts bids on items and the items sell for the highest bid. In Louisiana and Texas where we perform such tasks, the auctioneer must be licensed.|
|Estate Sales are performed for several reasons. A family members passing, downsizing to a retirement center or nursing home, moving, etc. The number one reason for Estate Sales are due to a death in the family. The scope of the process is usually overwhelming to the survivors. As long as you are in possession of the entire estate of items (usually a lifetime's collection worthy of selling to collectors, dealers & Estate Sale Shoppers then you are totally within your ethical rights to have an Estate Sale.|
|Typical Estate Sales run 1 to 3 days usually with price reductions toward the end of the sale. When the survivors of the deceased cannot agree to the disposition of tangible property, a court may order those goods to be sold in an Estate Sale or Estate Auction with the proceeds to be divided between the survivors. Such a sale and division may also be mandated in the will of the deceased.|
|Many people think that "all of the good stuff will be gone" by the time an Estate Sale is held. This is simply not true. While some family members may hold back the occasional family photos, personal papers or certain collections, the family usually doesn't have a need for anything more in their lives nor their homes. That leaves us in charge of redistributing many years of the inheritance, years of hoarding and collecting. What comes out of these homes astound most people on the outside of the liquidation. The fact is that some of the most expensive and sought after things in auction houses came from the exact same situation and homes that these sales are given inside of.|
|As estate liquidators, we have uncovered such things as rare gun collections, gold jewelry, coins, costume jewelry, collections, art and so much more. Not everything is a treasure, but most homes hold some if not many special treats to excite any collector. Some homes are just loaded full. On the other end of the spectrum, people that attend Estate Sales are also in need of everyday items that they know can be obtained at a bargain so in most cases not much will be left after the sale is over. Hiring a professional will give them the task of identifying, organizing, pricing and/or selling items that can be time-consuming and emotionally difficult for family.|
|An ethical estate liquidator doesn't pre-purchase from their own sales and would never think of taking the cream from the crop. The excitement and privilege of their return customers ensures those clients get the first choice of fine collectibles and rare antiquities, keeping them loyal and coming back for many years to come. When you attend one of our estate sales, you see exactly what the people had when they left the home|
|Many people think that only the wealthy have Estate Sales. This also is not the case. Many middle and lower class families have collectible items that cost little or nothing to purchase initially such as premiums given away by merchants, sales samples, advertising pieces, and sports cards given with purchase of cigarettes, gum, and such. Many ephemera pieces and early tin pieces were inherited with family hand me downs, so many items of value are in farms, homes with little worth, and with very poor people. Estate sales of the rich are hardly the norm for most liquidators.|
|Many also think that you must have antiques to have and Estate Sale. There are ample sales where there are few if any collectibles that still do very well with their net worth. The fact is, if an item is needed for day to day living, it can be re-distributed and sold at a profit above donating, giving or throwing into a landfill. There is no reason to ignore items of worth simply because they are new and everyday items.|
|Should you choose us to liquidate your Estate, please, do us or whomever you choose a favor and "leave it" alone. Be sure not to clean, throw, sort, or rid the house of ANYTHING prior to calling us to empty the house. Too many times the idea of "cleaning" is an estate liquidator's idea of stripping and wrecking the chance of a virgin estate to the public. You would be amazed at how much items you would normally have just tossed into the garbage will bring. We are professionals and can likely decide and sort, clean and merchandise this area for you with no burden on the families part. We understand that most individuals are understandably apprehensive about having their homes (or the home of a loved one) open to the public. Our clients have our assurance that the items they desire to sell will be liquidated in an efficient, professional and worry-free manner.|
|Auctions Unlimited can perform many things that most others in our area cannot. We are fully licensed, bonded and insured. We have many years of experience and call on others with more expertise to assist us in devising the right price of the property. We not only perform Estate Tag Sales but are licensed to perform auctions in Louisiana & Texas. (Please read more on this under AUCTIONS VS. ESTATE SALES.) We also offer a full accounting of the items sold during the sale. Every item sold is documented. We also work with reputable Real Estate companies if the home needs to be sold as well or the home can also be put up for auction.|
CHOOSING A COMPANY
|It is important to start communicating with estate sale companies as soon as possible. Many companies only hold one or two sales per month, so they may plan their sales several months in advance. Because you are entrusting a company with your property, it is important to dutifully research companies before making a decision about who to hire. It is important to do the following things:|
|No matter which company you choose to perform your sale/auction there are several things you must do to prepare. Be sure to do the following:|
THINGS TO WATCH OUT FOR
Selling a loved one’s property is never an easy task—but, with the right help, it can be done in an efficient, compassionate, and profitable manner.
WHAT WE CAN DO FOR YOU...
At Auctions Unlimited we can offer you several choices that most others are not able to offer. We are licensed, bonded and insured in both Louisiana and Texas. The biggest difference with us is your options of "choice". Not only are we able to offer you an Estate Tag Sale but we can also offer you the choice of an Estate Auction. We can also offer you the choice of being able to sell anything that doesn't sell at your Estate Sale to be taken into our auction house to be sold so you can still get a fair price. (Please read more below about Estate Sale vs. Estate Auction)
We will come by for the initial meeting, look through the home, find out your needs and your time line. We will decide on a tentative date for the sale and may even start shooting pictures for advertising. We will discuss all aspects of the sale and answer any questions that you may have.
After the date has been chosen we will begin to sort and set up. This includes making the determination as to what is to be thrown out and what is to be sold. The set up is very neat and orderly displaying items so that customers will want to buy! We research items to ensure they are priced just right and when in doubt we will even call in other experts in certain fields to help insure we get the best dollar for your personal property.
We will have sufficient staff to cover the sale and make the atmosphere a comfortable shopping experience for customers. We document every penny that is taken in at the sale and offer 2 different methods in which to report it to you. Either way, you know how much money was taken in. We also take credit cards as it is a proven fact that customers will spend more if they know they can use their cards.
We will meet with you the Thursday or Friday following the sale so that we can bring your check and reports or if it's more convenient, we can also just set it up to be mailed to you.
ESTATE SALE VS. ESTATE AUCTION
This is probably the most asked question we get. Which is better? An Estate Tag Sale or An Estate Auction?
Well, first off both have their advantages. Having had enough experience with both, I feel that the determination cannot be made until the home has been assessed.
Normally, Estate Sales will do better in the city and auctions will do better in outlying areas or in country settings but we've had them in both ways in both of the settings. There are several reasons for this.
1. Many more people will attend an auction at one time and they are all there at the same time making for parking problems, traffic jams, etc. It's hard to pack hundreds of folks in a normal sized house with little parking. With an Estate Sale people flock throughout the days of the sale so the parking and crowding and more equalized.
2. Everything in and Estate Sale is "priced". Some people panic at the idea that an item will sell to the highest bidder. More times than not however if you have an Estate Auction many of the items may sell higher than the items would have been priced at a sale.
3. After Estate Sales if there are items left over to be sold we can take them to our auction house for another chance to be sold. Any other items that are not salable through auction (i.e. clothing, etc.) we have non-profit organizations that will come and take the items for you and give you a tax deductible receipt.
4. In a country or suburb setting where there is ample parking auctions will most likely do better. It has been our experience that auctions are a better hassle free way to sell Estates and when it's over EVERYTHING is gone. No need for clean outs, buy outs or finding other ways to sell unsold items.
5. With our vast customer base, we do well both ways so the choice is really up to the client. We will sit with you to explain all of the options and be happy to guide you in the right direction.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Do you advertise? Yes, we advertise a lot. We advertise in the local papers, (depending on where the sale is will determine which papers are advertised in) we advertise heavily on our website and other Internet links and if the sale warrants we even mail out flyers and leave them in stores around town and other businesses.
Who pays for the advertising? We pay for all of the advertising unless special advertising is requested. In such cases, we will discuss this during our pre-sale meeting. We will also put up signs leading to the sale so that people that missed any print advertising happen to be passing by they will know we are there.
Are your prices negotiable? We are not negotiable on prices until the second day of the sale. Typically, items are reduced by 25% on the morning of the second day and 50% after lunch time. We also take bids on any items throughout the sale.
Do you offer presales for the family? Dealers? We do offer presales for the family if requested at the time the contracts are signed. We do not hold special presale to dealers. We will however sell items prior to the sale if one of our regular customers purchases from the Internet photos. They will still have to pay the full price that the items are marked. There are no "special" deals.
Should the house be up for sale during the Estate Sale/Estate Auction? We recommend listing the house on the market a few days prior to the sale. We even offer Real Estate services for you and/or Auction services. We also recommend whoever your choose as your Real Estate Agent to contact us prior to the sale so that they can leave flyers and cards with us with information about the sale of the house. remember many people will be crossing the thresh hold during the sale so the more people that get information about the sale of the house the more exposure you will get.
What do we (the family) need to do to get ready for the sale? Really the only thing you need to do is to remove anything from the house what will not be included in the sale and make sure to gather up all of your important papers to take with you.
What happens with the more expensive items during the sale? During the set up, the more expensive items are placed near the check-out so they can be monitored during the sale. Small items such as fine jewelry and better costume jewelry, etc., will be placed in locking cabinets and displays right in the check-out area to help eliminate theft.
How much time do you need to set up for the sale? This is a loaded question. In a perfect world a month would be wonderful but in most cases this is just not going to happen. Because of deadlines, the sale of the house, etc., two weeks is usually the norm. However, we have been known to get a sale together, set-up, priced and completed in less than a week. This is not how we like to do it, but we know how valuable time can be.
We don't have much in the house to sell, is the sale big enough for an Estate Sale? There are always options if there isn't enough for a sale. We do partial and complete buyouts of other estates and can bring items to make a complete sale or take items to other sales. We can also bring items into our auction house to sell for you. The options are endless. Any way you look at it Estate Sales and Auctions will bring in much more money then garage sales.
What happens with the leftover items? Again, there are several choices. Items the we feel will do well at auction can be taken to our auction house and the other items can be donated to non-profit organizations. We offer a clean out service where we will have the floors swept and the carpets vacuumed. You do nothing! There is normally not enough left after the sale for a buy-out and we never buy-out our own Estate Sales because we feel it is a conflict of interest.
Can family members be present at the sale? Of course they can. However, we do not recommend it because when customers come into the house they are not walking into mom or dad's house. They are walking into a store of sorts to buy ~ buy ~ buy! It can be very hard emotionally on family members to see other people handling and talking about their things. Also, sale are affected by family members being there. The customers know they are family members and that puts a personal link to the items and make them feel uncomfortable.
How do we get our money after the sale? We will meet with you the Thursday or Friday following the sale so that we can bring your check and reports. If it's more convenient, we can also just set it up to be mailed to you.
Does everything do well at Estate Sales? Pretty much everything does well. There are those exceptions and many times people have an idea that items are worth more that they are actually going to bring. I chalk this up to shows like the Antiques Roadshow. What people have to remember is this is a form of entertainment and are trying to get you to watch. An item is worth only what somebody is willing to pay for it. It is also trendy and Estate Sales like everything else, follow the trends.
What about cars and or other larger items? Sure, we will try to sell ANYTHING! For items like cars, trailers, etc., we will sometimes allow people to purchase them prior to the start of the sale. We will also negotiate lower commission rates on cars and other high value vehicles.
I'm worried people will try to come to our home prior to the sale. Not to worry about this as we do not release the address of the sale until a couple of days prior to the sale.